Town Beach Water Quality Improvements
Notice: The Barrington Town Beach water quality improvement project was completed prior to the opening of beach season in 2014.
Project Description: The $360,000 project included:
- Re-pavement of the entire parking lot.
- Expansion of the beach area with the removal of sections of asphalt nearest the beach.
- Parking spaces will be eliminated at the west end of the beach, an area where the asphalt has become undermined due to frequent flooding. Overall, the number of parking spaces will be reduced from about 100 to 80; however, the area near the new beach building will be available for overflow parking as needed.
- Removal of an asphalt swale in the Water Way right of way at the west end of the beach, to be replaced with a drainage swale designed to improve water quality and reduce beach erosion.
- Rain gardens at several locations within the parking lot, including at the end of Bay Road and at the end of Beach Road.
- New wood bollards and wood fence guardrail replacing all existing metal and wood guardrail.
- Other improvements, including plantings, new bike racks holding up to 26 bikes, new benches, new service access gates and a new outdoor shower.
- Save the Bay, working with volunteers, planted beach grass along the new edge of pavement with the goal of establishing protective dunes over time. Additional volunteers will be needed in the future to replace damaged beach grass plants.
The existing cinderblock building at the end of Bay Road, which dates to the 1950s, has been removed to improve traffic flow into the parking lot and provide room for the rain gardens at the end of Bay Road. The block building is no longer needed due to the new office/restroom building at the Town Beach. The contractor was William Anthony Excavating of North Kingstown. Gifford Design Group of Cumberland, RI, was the Town's design consultant for the project. The Town utilized local bond funding to leverage a State Revolving Fund loan for "green infrastructure" improvements at the beach.
The State Revolving Fund, co-managed by the R.I. Clean Water Finance Agency and Office of Water Resources, provides below market rate loans for water pollution abatement projects, as well as principal forgiveness for inclusion of "green infrastructure" features in the design. The financing from the State for the Town Beach project included a principal forgiveness totaling approximately $50,000.
The plans can be found here.
Existing Conditions (Before Improvements)
Old 1950s beach restroom/storage building (June 2010)
Aerial of beach (2008)
Beach Building Project (completed summer 2011)
Pavement removal, driving of piles for new building - March 2011
New building under construction - June 2011
New building completed (photo taken prior to start of water quality project)
Water Quality Project
October 7, 2013: End of Bay Road (prior to project start)
October 23, 2013: Removing wood guardrails
October 2013: Demolition of old restroom building (credit: Barrington Times)
November 4, 2013: Adding new sand
November 12, 2013: Work on access path at west end
November 26, 2013: New walkways at end of Bay Road
December 5, 2013: New pavement
April 1, 2014: Beach grass planting by Save the Bay and volunteers.
May 16, 2014: Walkway, bench, rain garden at end of Bay Road.
May 16, 2014: West side of parking lot (west of Bay Road).